First of all, I must say thank you to Bon Appétit for posting my open-faced tomato sandwich on The Feed here, along with many other talented readers. Thank you!
There are many forms of cruel and unusual punishment in this harsh world, but none come close to eating a sandwich left in a plastic bag in the Louisiana heat until high noon. There I sat, in my faded jean shorts and favorite Winnie the Pooh tee shirt, staring down my soggy, sorry excuse for a sarnie. I could see the steam from the amalgamation of Wonder bread and humidity as it filled the inside of the plastic bag. Slowly, I opened the curiously terrifying container. One by one, the little snaps of the Ziploc bag crackled away to the force of my fingers and by shear will. And then, the showstopper. The smell of hot, French’s mustard and soggy bread with just a hint of hammy-hammy-ness filled my innocent nostrils. I cringed as if someone had jammed 20 Flintstone vitamins into my mouth, not even the somewhat tolerable orange ones, THE PURPLE ONES. Reluctantly, I ate my not-so-wonderful-Wonder bread sandwich in pea-sized pieces, while staring sadly at the line of chips and cookies that were strewn across my cafeteria table. Oh how I longed for a Lunchable!
By the time I got home, I was ravenous. Running off the bus and onto the lawn, I threw my backpack into the yard, and I gave a good tug on the screen door of our house. I was in the fridge by the time I heard it close shut. BANG! The cast of characters was meticulously laid out: bread, mayonnaise and freshly cut tomatoes. Taking one bite of the creamy tomato sandwich magically erased the Hitchcock-level horror from earlier that day. And there I relaxed, sitting in front of the television laughing at an episode of I Love Lucy with a tomato sandwich. Life was good.
This recipe is a more grownup version of my childhood go-to sandwich. It still has the same enchanted effect of changing a terrible day into a great one.
Recipe: Serves 1 Hungry Soul
Toast up 2 pieces of bread. Add 2-3 slabs of feta cheese onto the toast. Add 2 tomato slices on top of the cheese. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Garnish with fresh herbs. Place the second piece of toast on top and enjoy!